Thursday, October 21, 2010

Char's Original - "No-Ricotta" Cheese Stuffed Shells

Yes, you read that right this is an original made by me. I was looking around for what to make for dinner and remembered I found these jumbo shells at the store the other day. I've wanted to make stuffed shells for a while but couldn't find the shells. So now that I've got the shells, what do I put in them?! I've always seen recipes for ricotta cheese in shells, just like in raviolis and while I'm not one to keep a lot of cheese on hand, on account I'm lactose intolerant, I looked to see what I did have. I had bought a small chunk of parmesean cheese for making Josh's cheese-garlic bread and have some cream cheese for bagels. Why not make my own?!

About 2-3 big hand fulls of shells (uncooked). Depends how much "stuffing" you make
1/2 block or whole block of cream cheese (again, depends how many shells you want to make or how much stuffing you make)
1/2-3/4 cup shredded parmesean cheese
1/4 cup soy milk (use regular milk if you like)
1 cup chopped leaf spinach (I used fresh spinach)
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1 small green onion, chopped
1 tablespoon butter
About 1 cup of your favorite tomato sauce (bottled or homemade)

In a large pot cook the shells just like any other noodle. Make sure not to over cook the noodles. Set aside.

In another small pot add butter and turn on low heat. Melt butter and add spinach, garlic and onion. Saute until spinach is wilted, 2-3 minutes. Add cream cheese and milk. Heat until mostly melted. Add in shredded parmesean cheese. Heat for a few minutes until mixture becomes thick and all melted. Add more parmesean or cream cheese to your liking, or more spinach of course. I made this on the fly so what I had and the amounts worked out great. It would be easy to double  if you wanted or make less for single serving.

Put shells in a casserole dish and top with tomato sauce and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Wow-ie my house smells like Italy!

1 comment:

Merut said...

I love cream cheese! It has a better flavor and texture than ricotta anyways. These look yummy.